In my last post, I told you that I have a unique advantage of working with the leaders of America. I also have the unique opportunity of working with their successors. One of the hardest things to do in this environment is convey the years of experience and the intuitive business sense of a current leader to the next generation. So, I try to learn from these leaders to determine what it is that they have that can help the younger generation bridge the gap of inexperience. The first essential for success that I shared in the first post is that they take personal responsibility.
A second essential for success is that these leaders of the back-bone of America’s economy have learned to anticipate. They have become, from experience, trial and error, and making lots of mistakes, visionaries. They have an uncanny ability to pick up on business trends and see what’s coming before it comes. They always seem to be a step ahead. Now, the million dollar question is “how did they learn to anticipate? Or is this an inborn trait of entrepreneurs?”
I believe this ability to anticipate is not some esoteric or mystical thing. I believe it is simply the natural outgrowth of well developed proactivity, awareness, imagination, and conscience. In a nutshell, these leaders have developed a keen sense of where they envision their own lives going and have learned to take responsibility to become proactive in doing what they can do to achieve what they have envisioned. Most people have dreams. Leaders have dreams with due dates and action steps required to get them there. They also pay attention to what happens as a result of their decisions and how others respond and react. They have learned to not get bogged down in mundane operational activities and the emotions of the moment to frequently focus on how these activities fit into the big picture. The leader sees how the wind is blowing and adjusts his sails to take his ship where he wants it to go.
When you have worked hard at achieving what you have envisioned, imagining, setting goals, creating action plans, following through, making tough decisions, and lots of mistakes, you too will grow in your ability to anticipate. Simply put, learning to anticipate is an outgrowth of experience for which there is no shortcut.